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09-26-12-ftcc.gifThe 2011-2012 academic year was quite memorable for the Health Technology Simulation Labs of Fayetteville Technical Community College. The commitment to “teaching with best practices” using high-fidelity human patient simulators has been an ongoing part of the curriculum for more than three years, but there were several exciting new developments this past year.

First, our original “family of five” high-fidelity manikins welcomed three new additions to the team. The Emergency Medical Science Department purchased Sim Man 3G and the Associate Degree and Practical Nursing Programs acquired the birthing manikin Noelle and her newborn baby, Hal. It is truly incredible that students entering each of the Health Technology programs at FTCC now have a total of eight high-fidelity manikins to support their learning process.

The number of visits by health students to the high-fidelity simulation lab has also grown tremendously – from 350 visits during the 2010/11 school year to more than 900 during the last academic year. Evaluations are completed by students following each simulated clinical experience, and the overwhelming majority of comments are positive. Some comments from students include, “This really helped me pull all the pieces together,” and “I feel so much more confident in my ability to prioritize the care for my patient.”

In the fall of 2011, FTCC added a new state-of-the-art control room that allows faculty to be completely removed from the area as students are developing their assessment techniques, communication and critical-thinking skills, and are deciding what action is the next right step. An audio-visual sim-capture program records all the events of the simulated clinical experience which can then be reviewed during the debriefing discussion between the faculty and students. Throughout this active learning process, the faculty members act as facilitators to assist each student to self-recognize things done well and areas needing improvement.

In the spring of 2011, the National League of Nursing, the organization that provides accreditation for schools of nursing, accepted hundreds of applications for their “Leadership Development for Simulation Educators” program. Mitzi Averette, FTCC Sim Lab coordinator, was chosen as one of only 20 people from across the nation to participate in this year-long opportunity. FTCC supported her attendance at four national-level conferences this past year as well as time to complete projects associated with the program. Averette was also elected vice-chairperson for the North Carolina Nurses Association Simulation Council. In addition, during the 2011-12 school year, she applied for, received and administered a Perkins Grant for faculty development related to Teaching with Best Practice: Debriefing Techniques.

Fayetteville Tech continues to demonstrate an incredible commitment to teaching with the latest technologies not only through the purchase of equipment but with the addition of personnel as well. One clear example includes the addition in July of the Health Division’s new Instructional Technology support position to assist not only in the high-fidelity simulation lab but also with all health faculty incorporating new technologies in any lab, classroom or online setting. For more information about any program offered through the Health Technology division, please visit http://www.faytechcc.edu/areas_of_study/HealthPrograms.asp.

Photo: Fayetteville Tech continues to demonstrate an incredible commitment to teaching with the latest technologies not only through the purchase of equipment but with the addition of personnel as well.

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